Fedora Project @ SFD Philippines 2009

Fedora Philippines shared a booth with LinuxChix Philippines at the recently concluded Software Freedom Day celebration at the National Computer Center in Quezon City. Ambassadors who were present for the event are Engels Antonio, Magie Antonio and Heherson Pagcaliwagan. Fedora friends who helped with our preparations are Mark Mercado, Rowel Bustillo, Henry Pagcaliwagan, Dona Marie Grace and Bernard Buenaventura.

Here’s an overview of what happened before and during SFD2009:

  • 4 Days. We prepared for the event in four days and it showed. We initially planned to offload a lot of things to vendors/3rd-party services but with a very tight schedule we had to do a lot of the things ourselves. Good thing we had a merry crew of men and women who created the banner and shirt designs, burned the LiveCDs, printed the stickers and prepared the LiveUSBs  – all in short notice and for extended hours too!
  • Design. With a tight schedule on our hands, our local design team had a tough time conforming with the Fedora Logo Guidelines. The 12-hour difference between Boston and Quezon City really highlighted our cramped schedule – luckily for us, Mairin stayed with us till the end and we we’re able to prepare designs which conforms with the guidelines to the letter.
  • Murphy’s Law.
    • Imagine buying 400 blank DVDs and you can’t burn a single working copy of F11 Install DVD.
    • Imagine having no running water for a day and a night while doing our preparations because someone forgot to pay our water bill (our apartment served as HQ). –> me 😦
  • 550+ Attendees. We prepared 550 LiveCDs and we emptied our boxes in a span of 20 minutes during lunch break. There were still a handful of inquiries afterwards but we referred them to FreeMedia and promised to help make the arrangements after the event. Majority of the attendees are students and some even came from Tarlac province which is 120+ km away from Quezon City. We also gave away Fedora stickers and 3 LiveUSBs.
  • Impromptu Talk. During in-between talks early in the afternoon session, we managed to take hostage a roomful of students and gave them an overview of Fedora Project and how they can contribute 😀 Questions include “What’s the meaning of the Fedora Four Foundations logo?”, “How to upgrade from one version of Fedora to the other?”, “How fast/often Fedora releases its distribution?” and the inviting “Can you pay our school a visit and help inspire our students learn Open Source?”
  • Engels on TV. Engels talked about FOSS philosophies early in the morning session and the reporters from GMA7 who were covering the event picked up his lecture. When you’re good, you’re good 😀
  • Making Friends at the Booths. We had some pretty good company in the exhibition hall and we made it a point to visit every one of them. Guys from MSI-ECS and UR Solutions (Red Hat partners), Bayanihan Linux Team,  Trend Micro, OLPC Philippines, UP Open University, IOSN and Ateneo DISCS were pretty good neighbors and we exchanged souvenirs with some of them.
  • Lots of Pictures. The irony of it all is that we had a lot of picture-taking sessions but we did not have a single camera on the premises. I’m pretty sure our faces is already plastered in some blog/website somewhere but I’m waiting for the pictures to be posted by Bluepoint (by way of Maj).

To wrap it all up, the event is a success – lessons from which we hope to build upon in our future events!

Photos to follow. Promise. 😀

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